US-based company Oculogica announced the launch of a roadside cannabis test that records and analyses eye-pupil characteristics.
The OcuPro headset records and analyses pupil characteristics to determine whether someone is impaired from recent cannabis use. The device will be piloted across several police departments in Missouri, US.
Current cannabis tests rely on analysing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) from samples of urine, saliva, or blood.
Although active cannabis ingredient THC can remain in the body for months, it is long after the subject feels any effects of impairment.
OcuPro differentiates between recent use within 60-90 minutes versus use over several hours ago. Oculogica CEO Dr Rosina Samadani says that the product addresses an unmet need for a scientifically and clinically validated test for impairment from recent cannabis use.
Driving under the influence of cannabis is illegal, with the drug slowing reaction time, impairing coordination and decision-making, and distorting perception.
Oculogica has performed clinical trials on cannabis users and non-users to develop technology that is able to differentiate between recent cannabis users and non-recent users.
Known for its eye-tracking technology, Oculogica aims to have the available devices available later this year, depending on the success of the pilot scheme.
Kansas City DUI Section Supervisor Sgt Blake Brownlee says: “In a legalised cannabis environment, we are in real need of a device that detects recent usage of cannabis, and impairment assessment would be ideal.”
Last year, Oculogica’s lead product EyeBOX has been granted clearance by US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The device can non-invasively aid the diagnosis of concussion by measuring abnormalities in eye movements.
According to the company, it is the first FDA-cleared concussion diagnostic tool that does not require a pre-injury baseline.